Antenna Placement?

Where are you all placing your antennas for the Footy? I realize if I use the DX6 I have this will not necessarily be a problem but with a standard AM or FM radio that most have what are you all doing? I used a basic brand new AM radio as it was just sitting around but had some issues with reception. Antenna was at bottom of hull in tube not wrapped but straight. I tried pocking out back and worked much better. Was thinking of continuing this idea but wanted to see what others are doing first. Also contemplated running up mast. Any input welcomed and appreciated.

I’ve been OK with leaving it in the hull…I don’t let it go too far 'cause I can’t see it! I’m using a Dual Conversion FM system.


I run mine up my mast. But I agree with Bill, I don’t let it get too far because I can’t see what the sails are doing!

When I chose the AM radio to use I was fearful of this issue but on land it seemed to work fine so I went with it. I personally do not use AM radios in any of my boats I race but it was just laying around from a previous purchase. I layed in bottom of hull stretched out just like what I do with my Vic which I have no problems with but again for some reason just did not like it in the footy. Could have been the fact that this is a fiberglass hull I do not know.

I guess the best scenario is to use what I know works and do not use the AM. I never have problems with my other good radios. You get what you pay for I guess. :sunglasses:

Thanks guys for the follow up and info. I may still try to use this radio and figure out the best options which may end up being up the mast. Who knows. This is such a fun little boat to sail.

Hey guys,
If your mast is carbon fiber its not a good idea to run your antenna up the side of the mast. Carbon fiber is conductive and will act to shield your antenna from receiving your signal.
I sail a carbon hull with a carbon mast and spars using an old FM set. I run my antenna out through a plastic tube fairlead in the transom, along my fiberglass deck over to a place on the deck where my sidestay would be (if I used sidestays on my Bantam). From there to the top of the mast so that the majority of the antenna is in clear air. The range seems to be no different from my M Class boats or my 36/600s.
On those boats, which have Kevlar hulls, I run the antenna below deck in a teflon tube that is mounted directly under the decking. You don’t want to carry the antenna too low in the boat because the pond can partially mask your signal. Another potential mask for your signal would be if you carry the antenna inside the hull and sail with a fleet of carbon hulls. I’ve experienced this firsthand, although the interference is intermittent, and the best remedy is to clear yourself from the fleet (preferably by taking the lead). This situation will not be relevant to the Footy for a while yet I would imagine.
Another antenna mounting scheme would be to run the antenna out through the bumkin (aft facing bowsprit) and up the backstay. That is if your boat has a bumkin and a backstay.
By the way, a bumkin and a bowsprit are important to have on your Footy if you ever intend to race your boat, even if you don’t actually use them for anything. The reason is that the racing rules recognize appendages like the aforementioned as part of the hull. Maximizing hull length comes into play in several right-of-way situations, in particular mark rounding and overlap conditions. I would recommend painting the tips of both the bowsprit and bumkin with a bright color (yellow or florescent orange?) to make them highly visible.
I hope these thoughts have been some help.

Excellent advice Niel and thank you for sharing as I am sure others will face this issue in time.

I am really going to look at the option of running out the transom down the bowsprit and up the backstay. It worked this weekend when I just pocked out the back of the boat so I was very confident that was the direction I was going to probably go. Now that you have mentioned it as well I most likely will. I knew about the carbon mast situation so I was very leary on that option anyway.

Good stuff, Niel…thanks for the comments regarding the bumpkin/bodkin use. That’s a nuance of the RRS that I hadn’t been aware of.

Bill H